To keep the audience entertained during lockdown, Doordarshan has decided to re-air some of its old shows. They recently announced the return of mythological dramas Ramayan, Mahabharat, Shah Rukh Khan’s Circus, comedies Shrimaan Shrimati, Tu Tota Main Maina, detective drama Byomkesh Bakshi and superhero tale Shaktimaan among others.
Speaking exclusively to indianexpress.com, Archana Puran Singh, who played one of the leads in Shrimaan Shrimati, shared her joy of having her show back on television. “People are still aware of the show. People still watch it on YouTube and talk about its characters. I believe the show hasn’t lost viewership over the years. However, reintroducing the show will only get it more traction. I am happy that this generation will be able to see something that was part of the first set of entertainment shows in India,” the actor shared.
When asked if her kids have watched her show, Singh said, “A few years ago, I showed them an episode on YouTube. It started randomly from a particular scene and I told them that this is the show that I did which was very popular. To my surprise, they watched the whole episode, and later told me that they found it really funny. Personally, I never got a chance to watch it completely, so I am also quite excited.”
Archana Puran Singh is currently part of The Kapil Sharma Show, one of the most popular comedy shows on television. However, sitcoms in the recent past have not managed to impress the audience. Stating that sitcoms have somehow died over the years, the actor said, “I think everything has evolved. Also, the biggest problem is that channels do not want anything seasonal. I used to have a production company and I would be asked by channels to make a five-day show without any break. I refused to do that. It’s just not possible to make comedy in such a way. World over sitcoms are weekly, or at the most biweekly. We used to have just four episodes in a month and that is why we could bring that quality. The actors need to be fresh. There need to be punches. You cannot include interludes to make up for the missing dialogues in a comedy show. It has to be pacy and consistent.”
While Archana Puran Singh and Rakesh Bedi will rejoice at the comeback of Shrimaan Shrimati, they will also miss the presence of Jatin Kanakia and Reema Laagoo, who played the other lead characters. Remembering her co-stars, Singh said, “It would be an emotional moment, and we will really miss them. I think I will video call Rakesh, so that we can watch the episode together. I must add that I have the greatest respect for Rakesh as a comedy actor. He is quite well known, however, he hasn’t been given the due respect. He definitely deserved more.”
Lastly, when we quizzed her on her experience of the lockdown, Archana Puran Singh said, “Honestly, I virtually live an isolated life in Madh Island, away from the city life. Apart from the two day of shoot for The Kapil Sharma Show, I don’t usually go out, even to watch films, dinners or parties. I don’t really have a social life, so it hasn’t changed much. My sons, yes, since they were working, they are at home. However, they too lead a far more isolated life than most youngsters in town. The lockdown has given us more time to spend with each other. Now we do make it a point to watch a film, or play a game of cards sometime.”
“Also, as you must have seen in my Insta posts, we are going out on walks together. My mother used to go and meet her friends every day but since she cannot do it now, we make it a point to take her to the garden and spend time with her. Even our dogs are really happy now as we are all at home now. All in all, it hasn’t really affected us in a big way,” Singh concluded.
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